wandelaar

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About wandelaar

  1. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    There are indeed lots of people who combine Confucianism and Taoism by applying them to the spheres of social and spiritual matters respectively. I don't like the extreme ritualism of Confucianism, but apart from that I think there is a lot of common sense wisdom in the Analects. I don't think that as a (philosophical) Taoist one should have any reservations in accepting common sense wisdom from whatever source. As for measurability there is the basic restriction of the time available. I don't believe in immortals and so I consider (even enlightened) people as finite in the amount of time they have to spend in their lifetime. Now one could of course care for all of humanity in a rather abstract sense, and that would take perhaps a few minutes. But that in itself would be no more than an empty gesture. To get personally involved with someone takes a lot more. And so there are certainly limits to the number of people one can get personally involved with (and personally care for) within the space of one lifetime. That doesn't mean that one considers other people as being less worthy in any objective sense, it just means that you simply don't have the time to treat everybody you meet on an equal footing.
  2. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    I don't like that statement either, but to be honest I have to admit that in actual fact that is how we as human beings behave. And I don't see how as finite beings we could do otherwise without losing our humanity. Confucius was more realistic and down to earth about the concern for relatives without becoming immoral. Indeed we only have so much care, compassion or love to give. We better face it.
  3. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    Thank you - still I think there is a problem with regarding and/or treating others as oneself. It's natural to care for oneself and one wouldn't survive for long if one didn't. But there are way too much people walking around on planet earth to personally care for each of them. We don't even have the time to meet more than a minutely tiny fraction of all the people now alive even if we did nothing else for all of our lives. If I remember correctly there even is a criticism in the Chuang tzu of the idea of universal love as being completely impractical. But suppose some well-meaning idealist would do his best to approach the ideal nevertheless, that would mean that he would have to care precisely as much for his close friends and partner as for somebody he only had some small talk with several years ago. To be true to his conviction he should keep himself informed about the well being of many thousands of people he hardly even knows each day. And in that case there would hardly remain any time and energy left for his close friends and partner. I'm sure his close friends and partner would very soon consider him as not being a friend at all! This is forcing reality in a mould that simply doesn't fit, and the result would be disaster. The natural thing is to care more for those people you know than about those you hardly know or don't know at all. And forcing yourself to give each and everyone the same amount of attention would only result in nobody getting any real attention at all. So this again leads to the conclusion that one should be content with restricting one's involvement to a relatively tiny fraction of the world because there simply is no other workable alternative. And if one achieves something good by that, than the positive influences will spread out from there.
  4. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    Last night my thinking about imperfectionism continued in my sleep and so I dreamed about it. I was searching for some kind of solution or answer. And as no rational answer was forthcoming, I took a look at Chinese mythology. There I found a deity or something that had to do with imperfectionism and the way to deal with it, but I don't remember its name. Anyhow, in my dream I put in endless time to look up books about Chinese mythology, but still no answer was forthcoming. Waking up I thought about the Zwarte Piet-discussion in this country (I live in the Netherlands) that is slowly escalating year by year. And then I suddenly realised that our own effects on the world at large (whatever one's position) are negligible. (At this point some people might resort to violence to get their way, but that often doesn't work either and brings huge cost in terms of human suffering.) So we are stuck with essentially two possible choices: (1) You either accept the world at large as it is (including the minute effect of your own dealings with it); or (2) You go down a cynical road of pessimist rumination and ruin your own remaining pleasure in simply being alive. So paradoxically the answer I was searching for resides in accepting that there is no answer. We just have to accept the world (at large) as it is, and make the best of it within our own minute space of possibilities.
  5. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    It looks like it is not a spiritual book. That's correct. But as far as common sense wisdom goes, the book appears to have some very good ideas. And Lao tzu is not against plain common sense, quite the opposite. So I think (and hope) that the book I linked to can be used to assist in adopting a (philosophically) Taoist way of life if we simply ignore its ego boosting aspect (that unhappily is found in most self-help books).
  6. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    @ OldDog I think the Tao Te Ching contains lots of common sense wisdom, together with transcendental visions that go beyond it but don't contradict it. Common sense wisdom can be found everywhere around the globe. And it looks like an interesting part of it is explained in the book that I linked to. What you are writing also falls under the same category. I am somewhat of a perfectionist myself, so I have ordered the book to see what can be done about this. And to help me in interpreting certain passages on perfectionism and overdoing things in the Tao Te Ching.
  7. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    Perfect!
  8. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    Yes - as far as I could see transcendence is lacking in the linked book. But on the purely practical side I saw some correspondences in the sense that striving for perfect solutions or accomplishments is self-defeating. Paradoxically: good enough is best.
  9. Taoism and Imperfectionism

    https://books.google.nl/books?id=U8ghCwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false How does the Laotian idea of avoiding ideal extremes relate to the promotion of imperfectionism in the above book?
  10. speed of light foray

    Is pure consciousness empty of thoughts, images, perceptions and feelings?
  11. speed of light foray

    Since wandelaar said so! But you are still beating around the bush, why don't you just tell us why you think the soul can travel in space independently of the location of the brain. I might agree with you or not, but at least then we can explore how such a supposition relates to the theory of relativity.
  12. speed of light foray

    If that's how it works than it would be basically a physical process and thus it would follow the rules of quantum physics and relativity theory. (However the theory of information exchange by way of biophotons at the current stage of investigation is speculative at best.)
  13. speed of light foray

    The problem remains that there is no way to investigate the consequences of supposed capabilities of X (be it a soul, a telescope or whatever) as long as nothing concrete is said about what the capabilities of X are supposed to be.
  14. speed of light foray

    Instruments aren't the problem, the problem is that you refuse describe what you mean by the claim that "our individual souls are a refined thing that can travel to different positions in space-time regardless of the locations of gray matter, dark matter, or anti-matter". Subjective experiences are also experiences, and experiences are facts. You could at least describe which subjective experiences made you think that our souls can travel in space independent of the location of our brain. Otherwise there is no way to answer your question.
  15. http://www.sunypress.edu/p-100-chuang-tzu-for-spiritual-transf.aspx Anybody read this book? Any comments?